You’ve just spent the last three, four, or more years carrying out the research for your dissertation. Now the time has come to write!

For some, this will be enjoyable. But for most (including me), this is the worst and hardest part of earning a doctorate.

This blog will give an overview of key areas of the dissertation writing process. That way, you can produce a manuscript your examiners will enjoy reading.

Begin with a strong dissertation outline.

In the months before you complete your actual work, you should be thinking about how to best lay out your dissertation. Be sure to present your strongest arguments in the clearest possible way, especially if it involves a lot of statistics or figures.

Drafting a simple plan is a good way to do this. It is just a list of what is going to go in the dissertation, and where. It can be as basic as a list of chapter headings and a couple of lines indicating the main themes.

This is your chance to sort out your ideas in a logical order, such that the gaps can easily be filled in at a later stage. This is invaluable because you can keep revamping over and over as more ideas and thoughts come through.

Doctoral Dissertations

The references are another section that some students think is not worth spending time on – WRONG!

Examiners spot-check to ensure that the references cited are in the reference list and vice versa. Make sure that all referencing is consistent throughout a thesis.

Also, ensure that all figures and tables are correctly labeled and referred to in the text; wrongly labeled figures drive examiners mad!

When these basics are taken care of, ensure that you write clearly and concisely, explaining all the details. Do not leave holes in your experimental methods or arguments for your hypothesis.

Read each sentence over, and if you ask why at the end, you need a justifying statement or a reference.

I’ve just given you the basics here, but if you follow these steps, your dissertation will instantly be better received by your examiners.

So when your dissertation is ready, let our dissertation editors here at take a look at it for you. Just tell us which style guide it needs to follow and we’ll ensure that it matches.

If you choose our dissertation editing service, we will look at your dissertation from an examiner’s point of view, and indicate where you need references and extra information.

Most importantly, we will find the gaps in the arguments that a real examiner would ask about. Leave your dissertation in our capable hands and we’ll fine-tune it for you!

Originally posted 8/22/2010 and happily updated 10/29/2017. Thanks for reading!

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